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Old 27th Jan 2018, 09:32
  #321 (permalink)  
 
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I think the issue with rail travel is the hassle and price of it.

Firstly, the luggage space, especially on virgin trains and in the case of the North, TP Express , is abysmal. There have been a few times I’ve traveled on Virgin with a large-ish case, and often there has been a struggle storing the bag unless you are one of the first on the train.

Then there is the price. When train tickets are often higher priced than the flight the person has just taken, no wonder it puts people off. I couldn’t count The amount of times I look at twitter and see people posting ‘my flight from Berlin was £20 but my train home was £45’. Price wise, correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t the Heathrow Express is one of most expensive cost per mile rail journeys in the U.K. on a standard fare? Says it all.

With issues like that, if you are 2 or more people, no wonder people choose cars and taxis over rail travel. I certainly wouldn’t even contemplate rail travel for my family holiday, not a chance I’m lugging 3-4 cases, 2 hand luggage, 2 small children and possibly a pushchair on a train to get to an airport, with a change en-route too for me, I literally couldn’t think of anything worse.

Then long haul pax, do you really want to be waiting for trains etc when your shattered from a flight with again, likely large cases for such a trip?

Obviously rail is fine if you are travelling hand luggage only on a short break, but outside that, I really do struggle to see the appeal.
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Old 27th Jan 2018, 10:01
  #322 (permalink)  
 
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People are always comparing pre-booked plane tickets with last-minute rail tickets, when there are also pre-booked rail tickets, often a quite short notice.

And somehow lugging all this luggage, children etc from some remote car park seems not to be a hassle....

And if you're using your car on some holiday Saturday you have to allow hours to spare in case of holdups.
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Old 27th Jan 2018, 10:12
  #323 (permalink)  
 
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And somehow lugging all this luggage, children etc from some remote car park seems not to be a hassle....
And getting to the train station is a piece of...

And if you're using your car on some holiday Saturday you have to allow hours to spare in case of holdups
And if you're using the train on some holiday Saturday you have to allow hours to spare in case of engineering works or replacement bus service (he says from bitter personal experience.... )
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Old 27th Jan 2018, 10:19
  #324 (permalink)  
 
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Oban.

One of my last trips to London of 2017. Pre booked rail tickets 3 weeks out and it still came to £122 return. Bargain! Same booking period, could have gone to Dublin for 31.99, or Alicante for £80. Need I say more?

The trains near me are hourly to Manchester and Chester, so it also means I have to work to the rail schedule rather than my own. What about early flights? No option at all really. First train gets me to Manchester City and not even the airport for 9am, great for a 0630 flight.....

Also parking wise, ever heard of meet and great? Try it, you’ll love it!

No argument will convince me the train is a better option than a car for a family holiday.
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Old 27th Jan 2018, 12:49
  #325 (permalink)  
 
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Oban, having recently looked into advance rail bookings which I might need after arriving at a UK airport, I noticed that the cheap fares are not only non-refundable but for specific trains (same as airlines with specific flights). Consequently that is not an option because of possible delays to the arrival of my flight, or I have to allow X number transfer hours most likely resulting in having to hang around. If I compare UK unrestricted rail travel costs with the country I live in, UK prices are extortionate.
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Old 27th Jan 2018, 12:58
  #326 (permalink)  
 
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UK prices are extortionate.
Agreed, but when booking a return ticket there is usually an option with some companies for an open return which usually means any train off peak. My next trip to LHR from Birmingham will be a lot cheaper driving and parking for 2 weeks than using rail services. The current fare using the LHR express is £37 return.
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Old 27th Jan 2018, 13:07
  #327 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Hotel Tango View Post
I noticed that the cheap fares are not only non-refundable but for specific trains (same as airlines with specific flights). Consequently that is not an option because of possible delays to the arrival of my flight
Just as an FYI, the Airport Advance that TransPennineExpress offers on their journeys commencing at MAN can be retaliated on later trains in the even of a delay, the ticket needs to be revalidated at the booking office.

I know this is the BHX thread.
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Old 27th Jan 2018, 13:11
  #328 (permalink)  
 
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Useful info - cos if they tell you before you book, they keep it well hidden! Also, doesn't work the other way - if your flight is early, you can't get change to an earlier train.
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Old 27th Jan 2018, 14:01
  #329 (permalink)  
 
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It's not something thats all that well publicised, I agree. Also limited to 3 hours after your supposed arrival. I suppose after that EU-261 should kick-in.

https://www.tpexpress.co.uk/special-...hester-airport

I suppose its unlikely that your flight would be so early as to make getting an earlier train of much use, other than transatlantic flights in the winter, when tailwinds can be strong?
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Old 27th Jan 2018, 14:12
  #330 (permalink)  
 
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Guess what I was on
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Old 27th Jan 2018, 14:53
  #331 (permalink)  
 
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The fact that the number of PAX using Manchester airport and Birmingham international stations is growing more quickly than the number of PAX using the airports suggests that more and more people take a different view.
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Old 27th Jan 2018, 15:43
  #332 (permalink)  
 
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And good for them. But I will not be one of them...
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Old 28th Jan 2018, 10:23
  #333 (permalink)  
 
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The problem with these sterile arguments about car vs. rail is they hardly ever compare apples with apples.

When people talk about how much it costs them to go by car, they simply calculate the distance, work out how many miles they do per litre (or for some curious reason in UK, a gallon!), then multiply the litres by the cost per litre and - hey presto, that's the cost. Conveniently forgetting depreciation, wear and tear, servicing, insurance etc .etc.

HM Government agrees the cost of operating a car is 45p per mile. Try calculating car vs rail and availing yourself of the best advance fare offers and the gap narrows, and set against the hassles of the UK road network, I'd say it's at best 50 / 50 as to which is the best option travelling to airports like BHX, MAN and LGW - probably, in reality 60 / 40 in favour of rail.
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Old 28th Jan 2018, 11:01
  #334 (permalink)  
 
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But, the thing with adding things like wear and tear/insurance etc into the mix with a car, is that you already own the car, so, insurance etc is not factored in as it’s something you would be paying regardless of your trip to the airport.

In fact, one could say that it makes the rail option more expensive, as you are still paying for the dormant parts of the car like insurance, tax etc, but are now using rail so the tax etc isn’t being put to use.

Then there is ‘multiple occupancy’, so to speak. That means a car journey is going to cost broadly the same whether one person, or 4/5 travel in that same car. The same cannot be said for a train whereby every person has to pay the same amount.

Your 60/40 split in favour of the train also includes, as you say, availing yourself to the BEST advance offers, it’s not always that easy to grab these bargain basement fares. I used to commute between Manchester and London by rail quite a lot. I wasn’t a novice, I knew when broadly the best times to book were, but even then, the fats were not always that cheap.

Swings and roundabouts really, and like I say, I’m also taking ease into the equation, which for me, no matter which way you try and swing it, a train from me to the airport is far from easy. In fact, to get to my closest rail station, I have to take........a car! Defeats the point then really, doesn’t it! (And I know just me singularly is very anectodal evidence, but there will be thousands like me in the same situation that don’t have access to a high frequency rail station, nor one without a taxi/car journey to the station to begin with).
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Old 28th Jan 2018, 11:16
  #335 (permalink)  
 
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My general rule of thumb is that with one, the car is roughly on-par with the train, once parking has been taken into account. But once two or more are travelling the car becomes more attractive. If flights are between 0500 and 0900 though, it can be hard to get to the airport in sufficient time, if travelling with checked in baggage.

I don't think Train Vs Car is a set decision for all journeys. If there are 4/5 of us travelling and I can get a multi-story car park for a good price, then the car is a no-brainer. If its just me, travelling with only hand luggage, coming off a night shift the train is likely to be a more attractive option.
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Old 28th Jan 2018, 11:59
  #336 (permalink)  
 
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The point is that there are marginal costs for the use of a car over and above the fuel cost. (BTW, 45mpg = 10 miles/litre = at least 12p/mile). Mileage-related maintenance and depreciation, tyre wear, extra insurance for higher mileage; the problem is that because we don't pay them at the time, like purchasing a rail ticket, we underestimate them even if we count them at all.

We've all driven further to buy something cheaper, without working out that it would really have been cheaper to buy it from a local store.

Those of you who drive to the airport or into town should be eternally grateful to those who use the bus or the train and so leave space on the road or in the carpark.
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Old 28th Jan 2018, 12:25
  #337 (permalink)  
 
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All before you see the tears and stress when told that your train operators union is holding a multi day strike for politically motivated reasons behind driver only trains, at least in a car you have some degree of control
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Old 28th Jan 2018, 12:38
  #338 (permalink)  
 
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The problem with these sterile arguments about car vs. rail is they hardly ever compare apples with apples.
exactly - last car journey I made, it departed when I thought it would, there was nobody sat in my seat, I didn't have to stand for any part of the journey, no screaming kids

There are considerations other than the financial!
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Old 28th Jan 2018, 13:15
  #339 (permalink)  
 
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TUI/Freebird

Similar to other threads Freebird have the TUI third party flying to Turkey in summer 18 and BHX gets 4 despite an extra based TUI aircraft.

Monday FHY644 Bodrum in 20.40 out 21.40 wef 29 MAY - 3 Sept

Tuesday FHY652 Dalaman in 08.25 out 09.25 wef 22 May all season but might subject to change in October

Tuesday FHY636 Antalya in 14.30 out 15.30 wef 29 May all season but might subject to change in October

Friday FHY692 Antalya in 14.30 out 15.30. start of May all season but might subject to change in early May & October

The TUI Malta flight is still Air Malta still showing Tuesday KM174/5 21.45 departure but the KM website shows it a bit earlier and in some websites it shows as two separate flights (KM74/5) which I am sure will be merged at some point.

TUI also use Flybe to Verona on a Saturday BE9170 12.20 - 17.40 and Salzburg Saturday BE9415 15.55 - 20-.45

The only away based flight spotted is Thursday Malaga TOM7484/5 in 12.45 out 14.25.

The 787 is fully based from mid July 7 flights a week although for 2 days (Monday and Tuesday?) it is in Scotland in June and part of July.

All of the above is subject to change.

Thought it would make a change from cars and trains
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Old 29th Jan 2018, 15:22
  #340 (permalink)  
 
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Primera Changes Confirmed for BHX

Primera seem to be adjusting their ops for Birmingham...

- Boston scrapped.
- Newark reduced from daily to four weekly from June.
- Toronto remain 2-3 flights a week.

Looks like just one A321neo unit will be required for Brum, not sure how it remains “by far their largest base”

Seem to be adjusting to market demand, but still disappointing for the airport.

http://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news...ngham-14215588

Last edited by gilesdavies; 29th Jan 2018 at 15:35.
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